Mango Pi Launches Allwinner H616-Based MQ-Quad Single-Board Computer, MCore-H616 SOM

New SBC offers four Arm Cortex-A53 cores, 1GB of RAM, a compact footprint, and on-board Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios.

Single-board computer specialist Mango Pi has launched its latest design, built for those who are struggling to find stock of the popular Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W: the MQ-Quad, a quad-core SBC with 1GB of RAM.

The MQ-Quad is, the company has confirmed, built around the Allwinner H616 system-on-chip — giving it four Arm Cortex-A53 cores running at 1.5GHz and an Arm Mali-G31 MP2 graphics processor running at up to 650MHz, Elsewhere on the chip are AES and SHA acceleration engines, Arm TrustZone support, video decoding hardware for 6k30 or 4k60 H.265 and 4k30 H.264 plus encoding hardware for 4k25 or 1080p60 H.264 video.

Mango Pi has taken this chip and attached it to a compact single-board computer designed to mimic the footprint of the Raspberry Pi Zero family — complete with 40-pin general-purpose input/output (GPIO) header to the top. The board includes 1GB of DDR3 memory, a single mini-HDMI port with 4k60 support, a USB Type-C On-The-Go (OTG) port for power and another for USB Host use, and a microSD slot for storage.

What the board doesn't have: an Ethernet port, to make use of the gigabit Ethernet PHY built in to the H616. Instead, there's a Trolink TL8723DS radio offering 2.4GHz 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi connectivity alongside Bluetooth 4.2 support — while those who would prefer wired connectivity can use an 18-pin FPC connector to the far end of the board which includes Ethernet alongside USB and additional GPIO pins.

For software, Mango Pi provides images of the OpenWRT-based Tina Linux, Ubuntu Linux, and Android 10. Should even the compact Zero form factor prove too chunky, meanwhile, the company also offers the MCore-H616 system-on-module (SOM) with similar specs but a more compact footprint — while those looking to go in the opposite direction can purchase a bundle, which packs the MQ-Quad into a passive aluminum heatsink.

The MQ-Quad and MCore-H616 are now available on the Mango Pi AliExpress store, priced at $26.74 and $17.15 respectively; the MQ-QuadCooling bundle, which includes the MQ-Quad board plus heatsink case, is priced at $29.64. Additional information, including schematics, can be found on the Mango Pi website; the company has also pledged to release board designs under an open-source license if it receives more than 10,000 "fans" on its Bilibili space.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire:
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